Sunday, January 4, 2015

Before they call

I had to go to a walk-in clinic today. 

I won't go into the ordeal that led to my getting a prescription. On the contrary, I'll talk about an experience that I had at the pharmacy afterward.

I had called our pharmacy and it was closed, so I had to use the one right next to the clinic. I took my information and the prescription to the desk and got registered as a customer. Fifteen minutes, the lady said. I budgeted on 20 or 25, just in case. I went to sit down; there was a waiting room for the pharmacy customers (a great idea by the way). 

I was feeling pretty miserable. (Well obviously because I was at a walk-in clinic on a Sunday!) I sat down and began to wait. The radio was playing in the background and a song came on the radio that always made me cry - and sure enough the tears started to flow. At that very moment, a young family came into the waiting room to sit and wait for a prescription for the child - a little boy about 18 to 21 months old.

Now, I am used to really active kids and part of me - the not-just-introverted-but-sick-too part, the part that wanted quiet - just cringed. Not another ordeal to go through, I thought. I can't take any more of this. 

But the little boy saw me with tears still on my cheeks from the song I'd been listening to. He watched me as the song ended and I reached up and wiped the water off my face. And when he saw me looking at him, he flashed the most adorable smile my way and looked away shyly when I smiled back. 

He never cried, never fussed, not once. His mom had gotten him a stick of cheese and a tub of yogurt to eat, and she let him have each piece of cheese before he even knew he was ready for it. He didn't have a chance to get upset. She was at his elbow, anticipating his needs before he even knew he had them. 

Photo "Smiling Toddler Holding Rattle"
courtesy of stockimages at
I watched this beautiful dance of love and provision in amazement. The amazement grew as I learned that he had an ear infection and a congested cough - and was there for prescriptions that would get rid of them. That kid should have been screaming his head off. But he was happy because his mom knew just what he needed, how his mind worked, even to the point of showing him the container when he wasn't sure about the Greek yogurt - and he tried some - and he liked it! Then when he was done, she left him with his dad to finish up the tub and soon re-appeared with a "treat" - a package of little cracker-sandwiches. He was delighted!

The whole time, he was placid, happy, extremely well-behaved. And the wordless "smile game" that he started with me continued this entire time. His mom caught him doing it ... and she leaned in and smiled at him, asking him, "Are you flirting?" in mock disapproval. He just reveled in the attention his mom paid to him. 

So did I. 

I was telling someone about this afterward, and she said to me, "That would make a great blog post." 

And you know, I think it does. 

What I saw today in that waiting room was a love relationship built on learned trust. That little guy knew he was loved. He knew it - not because of anything he did but because it was true. And in that relationship his mom and dad paid attention to his needs and met them - sometimes before he even knew he had them. That's like the relationship that we have with God. 

He has provided everything that we need to live, to truly live. And before we can even think of what it is that we need - it's there. It's already there. He does that. He dotes on us, loves to meet our needs, and looks after us when we don't even know what we want. 

Like today. I was beyond myself, out of my depth, and here was this small child that I thought was going to add to my stress. I didn't know that I needed that little guy to remind me that God was looking after me. But I did. And before I knew, God knew. Because He loves me.

It doesn't have to be any more complicated than that.

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